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Homage to Chavela - Nacha Mendez sings Chavela Vargas
The Scottish Rite Temple
Santa Fe, NM
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Homage to Chavela - Nacha Mendez sings Chavela Vargas
Homage to Chavela - Nacha Mendez sings Chavela Vargas

Santa Fe's reigning diva of Latin World Music, Nacha Mendez, will sing the songs that Chavela Vargas made famous. Chavela Vargas was especially known for her renditions of the Mexican Ranchera Cancionero as well as for her friendship with Frida Kahlo, Jose Alfredo Jimenez and Agustin Lara to name a few. Not only were her songs used in the films of Pedro Almodovar  who was her later day, number one fan - but Vargas is also recognized for her contribution to other genres of popular Latin American music.

Nacha will joined by Carla Kountoupes, Chase Morrison and Jesus Gachupin for this concert to benefit the Mesa Prieta Petroglyph Project  a 501 c 3 charitable organization that records and preserves the over 75,000 petroglyphs on Mesa Prieta.

Nacha Mendez grew up in the tiny border town of La Union, in southern New Mexico, where she began singing and playing the guitar at an early age. She learned traditional Ranchera canción from her grandmother and performed in border towns near El Paso with her cousins, the Black Brothers, sons of ex-Mothers of Invention drummer Jimmy Carl Black.

She went on to study classical voice and electronic music at New Mexico State University before moving to New York City, where she studied flamenco guitar with Manuel Granados of the Music Conservatory of Barcelona, Spain. In the early '90s, she was a principal singer in Robert Ashley's opera company, touring Europe and Japan, and translated the libretto for Ashley's opera Now Eleanor's Idea. She performed trouser roles in three of his operas throughout Japan, at France's Avignon Music Festival, at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, in Strasbourg, France, Graz, Austria, and Berlin.

Nacha has received a National Endowment for the Arts Award and a fellowship from Mutable Music in New York. In February 2011 she was honored by the New Mexico Committee of the National Museum of Women Artists. She was voted Best Female Vocalist by the Santa Fe Reporter in both 2009 and 2010. Voted Best Family Friendly Entertainer by Santa Fe's Human Rights Alliance in 2012, and in 2013 she was awarded the Best Latin Production at the New Mexico Music Awards. She performs under her grandmother's name, Nacha Mendez, touring regionally with her band, playing her original, eclectic pan-Latin-style songs. As a solo artist, Nacha performs weekly at restaurants and clubs around Santa Fe including: La Casa Sena, El Farol and La Boca, as well as the resort and spa La Posada.

Filming begins in 2015 for a documentary about Chavela Vargas and Nacha Mendez for Aubin Pictures. Produced by Catherine Gund and Daresha Kyi, this film should hit screens in the summer of 2017.

The Mesa Prieta Petroglyph project began in 1999, has three goals:
TO RECORD as many of the estimated 75,000 petroglyphs and other archaeological features found on the Mesa Prieta as possible. TO EDUCATE and inform the archaeological community, local people and visitors about the Mesa Prieta treasure. Our primary focus is on educating young people. We hold a Summer Youth Intern Program and we have developed a dynamic science-based elementary school curriculum called "Discovering Mesa Prieta". We offer public and private tours for groups and individuals to raise awareness of the petroglyphs. In addition, we sponsor a community lecture series, "Petroglyph Pláticas", which focusses on northern New Mexico culture and landscape. TO PROTECT AND PRESERVE the important cultural legacy of Mesa Prieta for generations to come is our ultimate goal.


The Scottish Rite Temple (View)
463 Paseo de Peralta
Santa Fe, NM 87501
United States


Music > World

Kid Friendly: No
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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